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Avisail Garcia stays hot, Moncada helps White Sox finish off Reds in 12

CINCINNATI — Before the White Sox’ 12-8 win over the Reds in 12 innings Tuesday night, manager Rick Renteria revealed that right fielder Avisail Garcia is playing through tightness in his left hamstring.

You wouldn’t know it by the way Garcia, who has six homers in his last eight games, is mauling opposing pitchers.

Garcia extended his career-high hitting streak to 13 games on a night when he homered twice, including a tying shot in the ninth against right-hander Raisel Iglesias before the Sox scored four runs on back-to-back triples by Yoan Moncada and Yolmer Sanchez in the 12th.

Garcia also singled against Reds righty Anthony DeSclafini in the fourth before hitting his first homer in the sixth.

Avisail Garcia hit two home runs against the Reds Tuesday night. (AP)

“He’s grinding through this,” Renteria said. “He wants to stay in the lineup. He’s playing in the heat . . . staying hydrated. He gets treated, he gets ice, he gets stretched. He does everything that he can to make sure he’s capable of playing.”

Garcia helped the Sox battle back from 4-0 and 7-2 deficits, with Leury Garcia’s RBI single tying the game 7-7 in the eighth. The Reds then scored an exciting run to go back ahead in the bottom of the inning. Speedster Billy Hamilton singled, was bunted to second by Jose Peraza and stole third on Sox left-hander Jace Fry. With the infield playing in, Scooter Gennett rapped a sharp grounder at shortstop Tim Anderson, who threw to first baseman Matt Davidson for the out. But Hamilton sprinted for home and barely beat Davidson’s throw and catcher Kevan Smith’s tag.

With Jose Abreu not starting because of a bruised left ankle, the Sox needed the bat of Avisail Garcia, who took Abreu’s customary spot in the lineup. No. 4 hitter Daniel Palka belted a 448-foot homer to center after Garcia’s single in the fourth, and he followed Garcia’s 414-foot blast in the sixth with a 428-foot shot toward right-center.

According to STATS, Garcia and Palka are the first 3-4 Sox hitters to each homer twice in the same game.

“We never gave up,” Garcia said. “We show up every day.”

The back-to-back jacks more than jump-started a four-run sixth. Smith and Anderson singled, Davidson doubled in a run, and Adam Engel knocked in another run with grounder to third, putting the Sox back in a game they looked out of when right-hander Lucas Giolito gave up four runs in the first inning.

“I didn’t get the job done,” Giolito said. “But we had good defense and some really nice, timely hitting, and we won in extra innings.”

The first five Reds reached against Giolito, with four extra-base hits that included homers by Gennett and Eugenio Suarez. Giolito then retired 12 of 15 Reds. But in the fifth, Adam Duvall’s three-run homer put the Reds in front 7-2.

Moncada’s three-run triple in the 12th broke an 8-8 tie. He said the hit rivaled his homer and walk-off single against the Astros last season for career thrills.

“It means a lot for us because we have been battling the last couple of weeks,” Moncada said. “You win a game like today and you feel better. You feel like you’re doing things the right way. A big moment for us.”

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Hector Santiago (3-3) had six strikeouts in the 11th and 12th.

Garcia’s streak is the longest active hitting streak in the majors and the longest by a White Sox player since Anderson’s 15-game streak last September.

Renteria, who demands all-out effort on running out ground balls and benched Garcia in spring training for not doing so, has told him to take care of the leg on the field.

“All I ask him to do, to be honest, is pull back on the reins a little bit when you’re coming out of the box,” Renteria said. “I don’t want you to hurt yourself.”